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btt button

I checked in at the Booking Through Thursday blog, which is the host for a weekly book meme or blogging prompt. Here is this week’s prompt:

When you visit a friend’s house, do you find time to browse their bookcases? Does it shock you if they don’t have one?

Bookcases are the first things I look for and look at. The book collection (or the lack of it) gives a peek about someone’s personality and reveals a person’s life. I can always associate books with trips I made. No that I would judge my friends on it, but I cannot help to be shocked when there isn’t a tiny shelf for travel books and cook books.

It’s hard to escape the theory that there is an exhibitionist side to our bookcase obsession. It’s about showing off how much you have read, or plan to read, or pretend to have read. You are subtly suggesting that you are the sort of person who keeps Finnegans Wake handy, for example, just in case you ever fancy dipping in for a quick, albeit incomprehensible, catch-up.

Being a bibliophile and a fanatic reader myself, I like to take a peek at what other bibliophiles have in their shelves. It’s the same thing as any collection. If you’re into shoes, you’d get giddy looking at other people’s shoe collection. With a book collection, there’s always something surprising to see. You never know what’s tucked in the shelves.

5 Responses

  1. I love looking at people’s bookshelves! I am also highly suspicious when there aren’t any.

  2. I’m always shocked when I don’t see any books in a home. I confess, I do judge people on their books.

  3. I LOVE looking at what other people have on their bookshelves and am sometimes quite shocked and what I find.

  4. I love perusing the books of others. And yes, I’m often surprised to find that people don’t have bookshelves or lots of books. Reading is such a significant part of my life that it surprises me to be reminded that it isn’t that way for everyone!

    2 Kids and Tired Books BTT

  5. I can’t imagine that cookbooks and travel books are nearly as popular when there’s so much photography online. I did read once that e-books have helped save the cookbook industry, because you don’t have to pay extra for the full-page, full-color photos people come to expect from cookbooks.

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